Not too little, not too much

Chocolate Walnut Candy Box 01/05/2011

Filed under: Baking,Chocolate,Cookies,Desserts — Roxana GreenGirl {A little bit of everything} @ 05:40
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Many of us made the same old resolution: throw away the chocolate and candies and eat way much healthier, lots of fruit and vegetables and yet, here we are, few days later blogging about our latest cookies, cakes, muffins you see where I’m going.

Of course, I said the same as I do every year : if only I could give up chocolate. I never did, at least till now, and to be honest I don’t see this happening soon.

yeah, I did it again, couldn’t help myself not baking something sweet, well at least this time I used just a little bit of chocolate.

Later today, I’m going to another MOPS meeting and I just could not go empty-handed. Keeping that in mind I had to make some treats. Who doesn’t enjoy a small cookies while chitchatting?

Chocolate Walnut Candy Box

 

These buttery cookies are so soft, just melt in your mouth. Almost half of the flour i substituted with ground walnuts, for a slight crunchy bite. You can make them small, as i did, or even cut out cookies, the decision is all yours, but trust me, you have to make these.

Forget the resolution, let’s get baking ­čśÇ

Ingredients (makes 4 1/2 to 5 dozens)

10 tbsp soft butter

1/2 cup sugar

1 egg yolk

1 cup ground walnuts

vanilla extract

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

* If you decide to drizzle some melted chocolate on top, you need about 3 to 4 oz

Directions

Cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy

Add vanilla extract, egg yolk and ground walnuts. Mix them.

Add flour and mix just until combined.

Take the dough out of the mixing bowl and shape it in a ball. Cover in plastic foil and refrigerate for at least 2 hours, even overnight if not in a hurry ­čśŤ

When the dough is chilled, take small pieces and shape them into balls

Bake in preheated oven at 325 for 15 minutes.

Let them cool and drizzle with melted chocolate, if using. (on some I used colored sugar)

Let the chocolate set and store in airtight containers

 

I know you’re anxious to see how they actually look inside, so I ate one, here’s the proof ­čśŤ

Thanks for your support, I appreciate it.

Always,

Roxana

 

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Oregano Ricotta Knots and more awards 11/23/2010

Filed under: Awards,Baking,Breads,Cheese — Roxana GreenGirl {A little bit of everything} @ 23:35
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I know, I said I’m not going to post any recipe by Thanksgiving but I have some recipes I didn’t have time to write about when I made them and if I don’t post know I have the feeling I’m not going to do it soon. Plus, I still have to give the Lovely Blog Award to 30 more bloggers.

Today I’m going to share with you a Oregano Ricotta Knots recipe. Those of you who don’t like baking will say : ahhhh, another baking recipe but this is an easy one, actually I rarely do hard ones (I’m afraid of failure).

The ricotta cheese makes the knots stay moist even after 2-3 days, but for best results serve them warm to appreciate the oregano flavor.

Let’s start baking.

Gather on your working bench

4 cups all-purpose flour

1 package dry yeast

~ 1 1/2 cup warm milk

1/4 cup ricotta cheese

2-3 tsp dry oregano

2 tbsp butter

1 egg for brushing

and leave them at room temperature for about 30 minutes to an hour.


In a small bowl cream the dry yeast with a little lukewarm milk. Leave aside 5 minutes or so.

In the mixer’s bowl mix flour, ricotta, oregano, diced butter and yeast mixture.

Slowly add enough milk to form a soft dough.

Place the dough into a greased bowl, cover with foil and leave until doubles in volume.

Divide the dough into 12 balls

Take one piece of dough and roll it on your working surface into a rope.

Lift one end of the rope over the other to make a loop. Push the end through the hole to make a knot.

Place the knots on baking sheets, cover with foil and leave to rest for about 30-40 minutes or until doubled in size. Brush them with egg wash.

Bake them in preheated oven at 425F for 16-17 minutes or until golden brown.

 

inside view

 

 

Yesterday I posted the list with 15 lovely blog, tonight I’m going to post 15 more blogs and for the rest 15 please let me know which blog you think deserves the award and I didn’t mention.

1. Lisa from Korean American Mommy

2. Sara from CaffeIna

3.Andreea from Andrea’ s wellness notes

4.  Raven from Ravie Nom Noms Blog

5. Nancy from Spicie Foodie

6. Lindsey from Gingerbread Cake

7. Koci from La Kocinera

 

 

8. Yesim from Yesim Style Kitchen

 

 

9. Zerin from Give Recipe

 

 

10. Dionne from Try Anything Once

11. Cardamom Hills

12. Spice Sherpa

13. Black Book Kitchen Diaries

14. Torview

last but not the least, ladies first, right?

15. Chef Dennis from More than a Mount Full

I also want to thank you all for you kind comments, they make me go on and brighten my day. From the bottom of my heart a big Thank you

Happy Thanksgiving to all of you, hope you are surrounded by great people and delicious food

 

Cinnabon Rolls 10/29/2010

Filed under: Baking,Desserts — Roxana GreenGirl {A little bit of everything} @ 22:51
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I promised you yesterday that I’ll post my favorite cinabbon recipe. Is the closest version of the Cinnabon┬« . I have the recipe from Gabi Cara, to whom I thank once again. For the Romanian version go to http://gabrielacara.blogspot.com/.

 

 

Before I write the recipe I would like to ask for your opinion about the featured publisher program on foodbuzz. I’d like to apply but in the same time the thought of having to sigh a contract doesn’t quite put a smile on my face. I’ll totally understand if you don’t want to talk about it.

Back to cinnabons

 

Ingredients

2  1/2 tsp dry yeast

1 cup warm milk

1/2 cup sugar

6 tbsp soften butter

1 tsp salt

2 eggs

4 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

 

for the filling you need

1 cup dark brown sugar

2 1/2 tbsp cinnamon

6 tbsp soften butter

 

Directions

Mix the sugar and yeast with a little milk. Leave aside for 5 minutes.

 

Make a well in the middle of the sifted flour, add the salt, eggs and yeast mixture.

 

Start mixing slowly adding the melted butter.

 

then the milk

Place the dough into a greased bowl and leave to raise until double in volume.

 

 

Place the dough on your working surface and with a rolling-pin roll it out into a rectangular with a thickness around 1/2 inch.

 

Mix the brown sugar with the cinnamon.

 

Brush the dough with soften butter and sprinkle with sugar-cinnamon mixture.

 

Roll it carefully.

 

With a piece of thread cut the buns around 1 inch thick.

The bons will be clean and round

 

Place them on baking trays and leave around 20 more minutes at room temperature.

 

Bake them at 400 F for about 10-15 minutes.

While the cinnabons are in the over make the topping.  We like ours with cream cheese frosting.

you need

4 oz cream cheese

4 oz butter

2 cups powdered sugar

 

Mix them until light and fluffy.

 

Top the cinnabons with the frosting while still warm or hot. Sprinkle with walnuts.

 

closer

 

even closer :)))

 

 

 

 

Baba Ghanoush and Pide Ekme─či 10/28/2010

No, no, I’m not going to write in Turkish, I only kept the fancy names of what I’m about to write.

I should have written this post yesterday but, due to weather conditions, my internet connection was on and off and I just gave up after a while.

Last couple of days, I’ve been baking every day, not that my neighbors are complaining ­čśŤ . Sometimes I get this baking mood and I bake everyday something else. I’d bake from dawn till sunset if it is up to me ­čśŤ , on the other hand there are days when I have to make bread and just don’t feel like doing it ­čśŽ . I wonder if I’m the only one that feels like this.

 

The other day I made some Yumu┼čac─▒k Po─ča├ža, still Turkish he he

 

 

The recipe for this lovely breads you can find it on Zerrin‘s website, http://www.giverecipe.com/fluffy-pogaca.html I’m sure that most of you know her, and those who don’t, pay her a visit, you’ll thank or hate me later LOL

I also made some cinnabons┬á (I’ll post the recipe tomorrow)

 

Yesterday, I made Baba Ghanoush and Pide Ekme─či that stands for eggplant dip and Turkish flat bread

 

Baba Ghanoush (there are a lots of versions of this eggplant dip, this one is my favorite)

 

Ingredients

2-3 eggplants (little over 2 pounds)

juice of 1 lemon

2-3 tbsp tahini paste

2-3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil

handful of parsley

few garlic cloves

pinch of cayenne

 

 

Directions

 

Pierce the eggplants several times with a fork.

 

Turn the broiler on and roast the eggplants until very soft and wrinkled.

 

When cooled, carefully peel the skin away.

 

In a food processor, combine the eggplants, lemon juice, olive oil, tahini paste, garlic, parsley, cayenne pepper, salt and puree them.

 

Serve with flat bread

 

 

Pide Ekme─či – I’ve tried different combinations for this recipe and this time I substituted the water with mineral water, and, oh boy, this is the one I kept looking for, the perfect bread to be dipped in good olive oil and nothing else

 

Ingredients

4 cups all-purpose flour

2 tsp dry yeast (little over 1 sachet dry yeast)

1/4 cup lukewarm water

1/4 cup olive oil

3 tbsp yogurt

1 tsp salt

1/2 tsp sugar

mineral water (about 1 cup)

1 egg for brushing

nigella or sesame seeds, to sprinkle

 

Directions

Cream the yeast and sugar in the lukewarm water. Leave 5 minutes.

 

 

Pour the mixture over sifted flour. Add olive oil, yogurt and salt.

 

Start mixing adding mineral water until the dough is very soft and moist.

 

 

Place the dough in a greased bowl, cover and let it raise until double.

 

Divide the dough in two balls

 

Roll them out (about 1/2 inch thick) and put them on baking trays

 

Turn the oven on to 450F. While the oven is heating,  indent the surface of the breads with your fingers and brush them with egg and sprinkle with nigella or sesame seeds.

 

Bake them for 10-12 minutes until puffed and golden.

 

 

Thanks for reading, hope I didn’t bother you too much.

 

Buttermilk Crescents 10/25/2010

Filed under: Breads,Breakfast — Roxana GreenGirl {A little bit of everything} @ 20:15
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About two weeks ago Monet from Anecdotes and apple cores wrote about croissants and french bakeries http://anecdotesandapples.weebly.com/1/post/2010/10/croissants.html . Reading her post i remembered that as much as I love buttery croissants i hate making buttermilk biscuits. I know probably are the easiest thing to do but I hate making them. Few days later I was thinking why not combining croissants with buttermilk? The thought put a smile on my face and start browsing in search for a recipe; after reading few recipes i decided to go with the one from Taraduff’s crochet and other stuff http://taraduffstuff.blogspot.com/2009/09/buttermilk-crescent-rolls.html but changing it a little bit to suit my taste.

Ingredients (my way)

4 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

1 sachet dry yeast

1/3 cup milk

1 cup buttermilk

2 eggs

1/2 cup + 2-3 tbsp butter

1 tbsp sugar (optional)

1 tsp salt

Directions

Sift the flour and mix it with the salt and sugar and make a well in the center. Cream the yeast with the lukewarm milk and pour it into the well. Leave it about 5 minutes.

Add the eggs, 1/2 cup soften butter and lukewarm buttermilk.

Mix well for few minutes adding a little flour or milk if needed.

In a greased bowl leave the dough to raise until it doubles in volume.

Divide the dough in 2 balls and roll it out using a rolling-pin.

Brush it with melted mutter and cut it into 12 triangles.

Roll each triangle up starting with the wide side. Place them on baking trays and leave them to raise again.

Bake in preheated oven at 350 F for 15-17 minutes.

inside view ­čśŤ

 

Walnut and Ricotta Cake 09/25/2010

Filed under: Cakes,Cheese,Cheesecake,Desserts,Mediterranean — Roxana GreenGirl {A little bit of everything} @ 11:22
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Soft, tangy ricotta cheese is widely used in Italian sweets. The cake sinks lightly after baking, don’t worry, this gives it an authentic appearance.

Ingredients

1 cup toasted walnuts

2/3 cup soft butter

2/3 cup sugar

5 eggs

2/3 cup ricotta

1/3 cup flour

vanilla extract or your choice

Directions

Cream together the butter and 1/2 cup sugar until light and fluffy.

Add the egg yolks, vanilla, ricotta cheese and flout and mix together.

Add the walnuts and mix.

Whisk the egg whites in a large bowl until sniff. Gradually whisk in the remaining sugar.

Carefully fold the whites into the ricotta mixture.

Preheat the oven at 375 F. Grease a 9 inch round cake pan. Turn the mixture into prepared pan and lever the surface.

Bake for 30 minutes until risen and firm. Leave the cake to cool in the pan.

For garnish I mixed 1 8 oz container mascarpone cheese and 2/3 cup ricotta.

Coat the cake with the cheese mixture and decorate as you wish

and serve

a closer view

 

Chocolate ÔÇô Peanut┬áButter┬áCake 06/09/2010

Few days ago was my princess anniversary and again i spoiled my family with a cake
Ingredients and directions
Filling
2 1/4 cups heavy whipping cream

1/2 cup (packed) golden brown sugar

340 gr  bittersweet or semi-sweet chocolate, finely chopped

1/2 cup  chunky peanut butter

Bring cream and sugar to simmer in saucepan, whisking to dissolve sugar.

Remove from heat. Add to chocolate; let stand 1 minute.

Whisk until smooth.

Whisk in peanut butter. Chill uncovered overnight.

Cake

2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon baking powder

1 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon salt

10 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature

1/2 cup chunky peanut butter

450 gr golden brown sugar

4 large eggs

1 sachet vanilla sugar

1 cup buttermilk

Preheat oven to 350┬░F. Butter three 9-inch-diameter cake pans

Sift first 4 ingredients into medium bowl.

Using electric mixer, beat butter and peanut butter in large bowl until blended.

Beat in sugars.

Beat in eggs, 1 at a time.

At low-speed, beat in flour mixture alternately with buttermilk.  Start and finish with dry ingredients. Add 1-2 tablespoon buttermilk if needed.

Divide batter among pans and spread evenly.

Bake cakes until tester inserted into center comes out clean, about 25 minutes. Cool cakes 5 minutes. Turn out onto racks. Cool cakes completely.

Frosting

340 gr cream cheese, room temperature

1 cup powdered sugar

3/4 cup powdered sugar

6 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature

1 sachet vanilla sugar

3/4 cup chilled heavy whipping cream

Using electric mixer, beat cream cheese, 1 cup powdered sugar, butter, and vanilla in large bowl to blend.

Whisk whipping cream and 3/4 cup powdered sugar in bowl until mixture holds medium-firm peaks.

Fold into cream cheese mixture in 3 additions; chill until firm but spreadable, about 1 hour.

Assembling the cake

Place 1 cake layer. Spread with half of filling. Place another layer. Spread with remaining filling. Top with remaining cake layer. Spread frosting over top and sides of cake.

 

 
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